Home Discussion Forum How common is belief in the supernatural in India?

How common is belief in the supernatural in India?

Are many people in India superstitious? Do the majority believe in auras? About what per cent?


  1. Many in USA are firm believers in supernatural. So also in many of the developed world.Indians are no exception. So let us understand the topic a bit more detailedy. Following is an effort to collect information :
    supernatural or supranatural (Latin: super, supra “above” + natura “nature”) pertains to an imagined order of existence beyond the scientifically visible universe. Religious miracles are typically supernatural claims, as are spells and curses, divination, the belief that there is an afterlife for the dead, and innumerable others. Supernatural beliefs have existed in many cultures throughout human history.
    Characteristic for phenomena claimed as supernatural are anomaly, uniqueness and uncontrollability, thus lacking reproducibility required for scientific examination. Supernatural themes are often associated with paranormal and occult ideas, suggesting for possibility of interaction with the supernatural by means of summoning or trance for instance.
    Adherents of supernatural beliefs hold that such occurrences exist just as surely as does the natural world. Opponents argue that there are natural, scientific explanations for what is often perceived as the supernatural. Controversy has surrounded the issue for as long as there have been those who did not believe in the supernatural. One complicating factor is that there is no universal agreement about what the definition of “natural” is, and what the limits of naturalism might be. Concepts in the supernatural do
    Views on the supernatural
    Speculative views on the “supernatural” include that it may be
    Others assert that God, miracles, or other putative supernatural events are real, verifiable, and part of the laws of nature that we do not yet understand.
    Arguments in favor of a supernatural reality
    Many proponents believe that past, present and future complexities and mysteries of the universe cannot be explained solely by naturalistic means and argue that it is reasonable to assume that a non-natural entity or entities resolve the unexplained . By its own definition, science is incapable of examining or testing for the existence of things that have no physical effects, because its methods rely on the observation of physical effects. Proponents of supernaturalism claim that their belief system is more flexible, which allows more diversity in terms of intuition and epistemology.
    The author of Ghost Stations, Bruce Barrymore Halpenny, expressed his beliefs in the supernatural; “It is difficult for people to believe in ghosts and this is understandable for people tend to accept only what they can see and hear with their normal senses. Strange paranormal events take place, which seem to verge on fantasy, these events happen when we least expect them. It is not necessarily the bewitching hour of midnight, which animates ghosts; neither is it necessary for the location to be the hallowed ground of some ancient churchyard, or burial place. Ghosts and other phantoms can show up at any time, day or night, taking many forms
    Arguments against a supernatural reality
    Many thinkers suggest that if a phenomenon is by definition outside of the realm of science, it therefore cannot be experienced and has by definition no impact on our lives.
    Our knowledge of the world is continuously increasing. Some occurrences, once assumed supernatural, can today be explained by scientific theories.
    Many suggested supernatural phenomena vanish when they are examined closely. There have been, for example, various studies on astrology, most of them with negative results author=Dean and Kelly url = http://www.washtimes.com/world/20030817-105449-9384r.htm (a single positive result cannot outweigh many negative ones, as it can be expected by mere chance).
    Supernaturality may be a remnant of a static world view. It comes from a time when the growth of human knowledge was appreciably slower than at present. As another example, the Aristotelian Mechanics were considered valid for more than a thousand years.
    Some naturalists argue that the process of observing an event contradicts the definition of “supernatural”, therefore, no event that can be observed can actually be described as supernatural. This leads to the conclusion that if there were supernatural events and beings, we would not be able to know about them.
    A majority of supernaturalists of any given supernatural religion only believe in a very narrow subset of all supernatural explanations of reality when all the supernatural beliefs of all supernatural religions, past and present, are taken together. The vast majority of Christians today do not think that we are reincarnated, nor do the vast majority of today’s Hindus think that everyone permanently goes to heaven or hell when they die. This differentiates a Hindu from a Christian. Since for both groups in this example the reasons for their particular choices do not differ in any discernible way, to then make claims about the “truth” of their own beliefs and the “untruth” of the opposing beliefs would not be fair and honest. Thus someWho
    Naturalization vs. supernaturalization
    Some people believe that supernatural events occur, while others do not.
    The neologism naturalize, meaning “to make natural”, is sometimes used to describe the perceived process of denying any supernatural significance to events which another presumes to be supernatural. It rests on the believer’s presumption that supernatural events can and do occur; thus, their description as “natural” by the skeptic is seen as a result of a process of deliberate or unconscious denial of any supernatural significance, thus, “naturalization.” (This meaning of the word should not be confused with naturalization, the process of voluntarily acquiring citizenship at some time after birth. Also, plants, for example many wildflowers and bulbs including lilies, will “naturalize”; that is spread and develop beds without extra cultivation.)
    The neologism supernaturalize, meaning “to make supernatural”, is sometimes used to describe the perceived process of ascribing supernatural causes to events which someone else presumes to be natural. This perceived process may also be referred to as mythification or spiritualization. It rests on the presumption of the skeptic that supernatural events cannot or are unlikely to occur; thus, their description by the believer as supernatural is seen as the result of a process of deliberate or unconscious mysticism, thus, “supernaturalization”. Supernaturalization can also mean the process by which stories and historical accounts are altered to describe supernatural elements.
    The subjective nature of the issue
    Two people may come to completely different conclusions based on identical evidence. One may automatically “screen out” possible explanations simply because they conflict with one’s paradigm, or world view, and create cognitive dissonance. There can also be many other motivations, conscious or unconscious, for this selective awareness. For example, to make oneself “look good” to others and thus avoid isolation, or perhaps the desire to imitate personal heroes. Generally we criticize and question the picture of reality held by others; it is rare to question one’s own, rarer still to admit our own is distorted.
    Competing explanations and criteria of preference
    For some people it is not a matter of supernatural events versus natural events; they are all events, but there may be many competing explanations. The question then becomes what criteria shall one use to prefer one explanation over another, and one must be careful not to confuse the phenomenon with the explanation. We may agree that a bush has burst into flames; where we may differ is in the explanation for the cause of that event. The supernaturalist in that instance prefers the supernatural explanation based on one or more criteria of preference. It could be because the explanation includes constructs such as an immortal soul and other purported phenomena, such as the soul rising to a place of great joy upon being released at death, and they find this very attractive. The naturalist may prefer the natural explanation because such explanations are required to have predictive power, and being able to predict in a reliable way what will happen when a certain set of circumstances is present is something they find attractive. There are many people that are comfortable with accepting both explanations to satisfy several preferences; a supernatural explanation that provides comfort from the thought of death, and a natural explanation because of its utility in reliably controlling fire. For example, a Christian may accept the theories of Evolution and the Big Bang, but still explain reality as a deliberate creation of their god. One person may be a naturalist because they are driven by a preference for predictability, rather than comfort; another person may be a supernaturalist because they prefer an explanation that makes them feel better about their eventual death, rather than how useful it is in explaining actual reality.
    Alleged instances of supernaturalization
    The Tunguska Event reported as an instance of supernaturalization through an examination of the Bible and compared to historical events published in the contemporary public record.
    English Protestants believed that the defeat of the Spanish Armada in 1588 was a sign of God’s favor for their cause.
    Some fundamentalist American Evangelicals have interpreted the attacks on the World Trade Center in New York on September 11, 2001 as a sign of God’s anger at various and sundry things, including secularism.
    In Japan the scatteri

  2. India is like full of superstitions and every religion or culture here has its own set of superstitions and some of these superstitions have been so popularized over the past that even the educated have faith in them!
    the % normally depends upon the region and the type of people.. nowadays urban india may not be with many who believe in superstitions but the rural part of india[60% or more of india! ] is where these superstitions are very predominant


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